Visiting Scholar Seminar: Evonne Levy

The Art of Propaganda: The Chapel of Saint Ignatius in the Gesù of Rome
Seminar, 19 June 1998

Visiting Scholar Evonne Levy presents her research.

The purpose of my study is to apply the modern sense of propaganda to a key realm of baroque representation: the art and architecture of the Jesuit order. It is my contention that the epithet propaganda, first invoked after WW I, was a convenient shorthand for the early 19th century characterization of the architecture of the Jesuit order: an imperialist, manipulative architectural style, authored by a highly politicized institution I seek here to make propaganda a more productive category in art history by showing its historiographic roots in the “Jesuit style”, by bringing the scholarship on propaganda in its disciplinary home, the social sciences, into contact with its art historical use, and by applying the concepts to a specific work of art of the early modern period, the Chapel of St. Ignatius.

Evonne Levy was a Visiting Scholar at the CCA in 1997-1998.


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